November-December 2018 – digital edition

When it comes to scary movies, let’s face it, there’s not much that hasn’t already been done, but at the end of the day, you’re either scared or you’re not, and invariably I’m not. Anthony Hopkins’ portrayal of Hannibal Lecter in Silence of the Lambs left me cold and not in the slightest bit frightened. In fact, I will admit now that the only recent (ish) movies that have made me feel a little apprehensive before switching off the lights at night were The Grudge and The Ring, two US re-makes of Japanese originals. That aside, I’ve given up on the genre.

Far worse than horror movies is the passing of time. I used to think that going back in time, there was a moment when the world turned from colour to black and white; but in reality the world has always been in full Technicolor, even back in the Stone Age. For some reason, that’s scary. 

2018 has raced by and it’s been an interesting, challenging (and scary) year for the steel industry, dominated by President Donald Trump’s 25% tariffs. 

Tariffs have been great news for North American steelmakers, prompting Nucor Corporation’s John Ferriola to say there has never been a better time to be making steel. 

It was also the year when we heard that ThyssenKrupp’s 20,000-strong workforce finally approved the merger with Tata Steel based on promises of no forced lay-offs or plant closures, even if, as Wolfgang Eder, CEO of Austrian steelmaker Voestalpine, pointed out: There is a need for plant closures because 20% of Europe’s steelmaking capacity is surplus to requirements. TK and Tata argued that the merger would help tackle overcapacity in the European market without any forced lay-offs or plant closures. 

It has also been a good year for bolstering steel’s green credentials. Swedish steelmaker SSAB announced that the HYBRIT initiative is set to make fossil-free steelmaking a reality by 2035; and Voestalpine was optimistic for carbon-free steelmaking having gained approval for the construction of the world’s biggest pilot plant for CO2-free production of hydrogen. 

And now, with Christmas clearly in everybody’s sights, there’s nothing more to say than I wish you all the joys of the season and, of course, a happy new year.

Here’s to a successful and possibly less scary 2019.

Subscribe to Steel Times International Magazine

November-December 2018 – digital edition highlights

2. Leader by Matthew Moggridge, editor, Steel Times International

4. News Round-up plus amazing facts and figures

8. USA Update: Exclusive Interview with the AISI's Thomas J Gibson

13. Innovations – a bumper edition of 22 pages

40. Cyber Security – a thought-provoking article from Steel Authority of India's R&D Centre for Iron and Steel (RDCIS)

48. Special Steels – Dillinger Hüttenwerke is fostering research into the microstructure of special steels

54. Digitalisation – Quintic's Walt Bednarz on why steel companies need to go digital

58. Future Steel Forum 2019 – details of next year's conference

60. Environment – Jane Eriksson, sales & marketing manager Tube EMEA for Sandvik Materials Technology, looks at the key sustainability initiatives being undertaken in the region for tube and outlines those initiatives being undertaken by Sandvik group and how they can deliver more efficient operations. As a business area Sandvik Materials Technology aligns its activities to those of the Sandvik group.

64. History – Steam was the main source of power used by the industrial nations of the world until as recently as 1960. Harry Hodson reports